A2 Unit 4C politics revision cards

the final set

HideShow resource information
  • Created by: Abdullah
  • Created on: 03-01-11 15:41
Preview of A2 Unit 4C politics revision cards

First 483 words of the document:

Aims of the founding fathers
Power was dangerous and threatened liberty ­ federalism,
checks and balances, separation of power
Elections and Politicians should know that they are accountable to the
people and hence must serve their interest, or they will be
thrown out of office
1. The electoral system (First Past The Post) 2. The electoral system (Electoral colleges)
All federal positions are elected by FPTP and are fixed Disadvantages
terms ­ whoever wins the most votes is the winner Impossible to break the 2 party stronghold, will continue
like this Ross Perot the billionaire in 1992 gained 18.9%
Creates a 2 party system, so third parties can't win. of the vote but not a single electoral college
Votes for other candidates are effectively wasted. Tactical voting becomes a problem. Ralph Nader gained
Tactical voting­ voting for the one they least dislike. 97000 votes in Florida, votes that would have gone to Gore,
Parties don't campaign in safe/unwinnable states. and Bush only won by 537
Reduces participation some have no chance. Candidates focus on key swing states like Florida and
There are more votes against the candidate than for him. Ohio, leaving out safe/unwinnable states. Obama spent
very little time in California.
Advantages It is possible that a candidate will not win 50% of the
Ease, Simplicity and Speed ­ for voters and for counting popular vote, Gore had half a million votes more than Bush
Strong government one party always has a majority Advantages
Must consider smaller states that would otherwise be
overlooked ­Even Rhode Island(the smallest state) is
3. Congressional elections 4. Presidential elections
House of Representatives Presidential elections occur every 4 years and the
The constitution gives them control of the budget ­ i.e. how candidate can serve for a maximum of 2 terms.
to raise/decrease taxes and how to spend them. Therefore The winning ticket must have a majority (270/538) of the
they have short terms of 2 years so that they can be held electoral colleges. Each state has a specified number of
to account electoral colleges and most (except for Maine and
There are a total of 435 districts and each one returns a Nebraska) are won on the basis of first past the post. So
representative to the HOR. Boundaries are changed every the winner gains all electoral colleges of the state. For
10 years according to the census. example Barack Obama won all 55 electoral colleges from
The senate is responsible for protecting the interests of the
states. Senators serve a 6 year term and a third of them
are up for election every 2 years. This ensures that one
party is not able to take control of all branches at a time of

Other pages in this set

Page 2

Preview of page 2

Here's a taster:

Primaries 6. Caucuses
Invisible primaries Usually held in large areas with small populations.
Candidates start campaigning almost instantly after the A series of meetings usually 23 hours take place and
election for the next one, gathering funds and gaining participants try to persuade each other to support their
name recognition. preferred candidate. The candidate with the most votes
Mike huckabee announced his intentions for 2012 in 2008 wins.
Primaries (janjun)
Before elections candidates have the opportunity to put
themselves up for selection by the people.…read more

Page 3

Preview of page 3

Here's a taster:

The Message (2) 12. Voting
The air war
Appealing to far more people with TV and radio ads. Voting starts in the last 2 weeks of campaigns, with postal
Depends on who has access to the most funds. Obama ballots and early opening of polling stations.
outspent McCain and bought 30mins of prime time This is due to the complicated nature of voting with
television on 34 main channels broadcasting his national state and referendum voting taking place. For
infomercial, in the last few days.…read more

Page 4

Preview of page 4

Here's a taster:

Disadvantages of direct democracy 18. Concerns about the US political system ­ Cost (1)
Many ballots are initiated by special interest groups, who Campaigns are now extremely expensive Obama raised
are able to hold extra influence through their members. $635 m
* Increased professionalism/sophistication of campaign
May restrict government from functioning properly teams
proposition 13 in California stops the govt raising property * Earlier primaries(front loading) mean raising money
tax ­ financial crisis they are now in.…read more

Page 5

Preview of page 5

Here's a taster:

Aims of the founding fathers
The founding fathers did not want factions to form that
could pursue the interest of a particular group, by having
an disproportionate influence over congress and the
Pressure Groups
Yet they also believed that `the people' should be
sovereign and should be able to hold their politicians to
account. In order to do this there needs to be some sort of
organisation of the people.
2. Aims of pressure groups 3.…read more

Page 6

Preview of page 6

Here's a taster:

Influencing the legislature (1) 7. Influencing the legislature (2)
Bills Senate ­ why?
Pressure groups seek to influence both chambers, need to Filibuster ­ even getting the support of one senator is
overcome a divided congress (get bipartisan support), have enough to stop a bill if there is not 60% support for the bill.
60 votes in the senate for the filibuster, and get the support Foreign policy ­ all treaties signed by the president need
of committees and committee chairmen.…read more

Page 7

Preview of page 7

Here's a taster:

The impact of pressure groups ­ the left 13. The impact of pressure groups ­ the right
Policies that emerge from vigorous debate between
Believe that the wealthy and large groups simply serve the different viewpoints are likely to be in the best interest of
interests of the elite and wealthy section in society. the majority of the people. There is a simple competition
Contradictory to the aims of the founding fathers. Effective based system.
organisations with offices and staff (revolving door).…read more

Page 8

Preview of page 8

Here's a taster:

Umbrella Parties 3. The left and the right
For the majority of American history the political parties Being the party that supported government intervention and
did not have a strict ideology that they followed. They helping the poor and vulnerable in society, the democrats
covered the whole political spectrum, and members could were seen as the party on the left. However with much of
be at either end. its support in the south right wing and its catholic
supporters being socially conservative.…read more

Page 9

Preview of page 9

Here's a taster:

The Democratic party policies (1) 9. The Democratic party policies (2)
Blue Dog Democrats The left
This is the conservative group in the democrats, they argue Is a loose coalition of party activists and internet based
America has become more conservative and the organisations like MoveOn.…read more

Page 10

Preview of page 10

Here's a taster:

Summary and possible exam questions
To what extent are the parties similar/different from each
What do the parties stand for and what do the factions
Who supports who
Impact of minor parties/ why they lack success
1. Aims of the founding fathers
When writing the constitution the founding fathers wanted
to also express the spirit of the declaration of
independence.…read more


No comments have yet been made

Similar Government & Politics resources:

See all Government & Politics resources »See all resources »